Description and context
I decided to do the following assignment based on the Innovation Project which is currently part of the school called “Cantabria” in Puente San Miguel (Reocín). This project was selected in the first place in the last academic year by the Education Office of Cantabria’s Government, to implement it during two school years. Its title is “Me recreo en el recreo” and the main objective is to improve the school coexistence. Just as they described in their blueprint, teachers have always been concerned not only about acquiring knowledge but also about developing social skills and improving the emotional intelligence of their students. That is to say, motivating oneself as well as having empathy and mixing with people.
On the other hand, children spend more and more hours with new technologies and they are not used to playing traditional games or sports beyond football. Also, children do not have a great imagination when it comes to having fun both at break time in school and in their own free time. That is why, from the school, what is intended is to provide an environment of total integration during the free time and a healthy coexistence, even for students with special educational necessities.
It should be pointed out that it is in the schoolyard where a great number of conflicts have been detected among the students because they all have very different recreational interests. In this way, their project improves the distribution of recreational space, diversify activities and encourage the interaction of all students. All of that in order to have the best dynamic in the subsequent classes. Likewise, they expect to avoid abuses of power and monotonous games.
To sum up, they want to do a playground where students will be capable of practise a lot of types of sports and at the same time, they want to create a space for a meeting, living together and exchange experiences and knowledge. A space to educate.
Why is important this innovation project?
This project has great importance within the school environment for some reasons:
- Support existing school projects
- School improves as a Health Promoting School by including the emotional health in this plan
- It takes place the opening of the school to the resources community
- Restructure playground as a play space where there are a diversity of options
- Active participation of the entire school
- Advice work by the Physical Education department to organize break time
Compare it with other projects
If we compare this project with other existing ones, we find both differences and similarities. In this case, I have chosen the “Patio Project” which is being developed in the Molière School located in Huelva. Regarding the main differences we find the following:
- It is a private as well as a bilingual school in French
- It has students of Pre-School, Primary and also Secondary Education
On the other hand, although both projects want to improve student socialization, encourage learning, solve conflicts and promote diversity of games in the break time, this school includes two novelties that I have found interesting. First of all, they have created what is called “Friends Corner” for those children who feel alone or do not want to participate in any activity. And secondly, they are carrying out the development of an educational unit entitled “Do you play with me?” in order to reinforce the playground activity from the Physical Education area.
Personal opinion about it
Nowadays, innovative schools are setting projects like that in motion, in order to use break time as educational space with opportunities to learn. Sports such as football or basketball have always dominated the fields and it is not surprising that teachers wanted to change that with the aim of getting a greater diversity. In addition, I reckon that controlling break times must be considered as an essential teaching assignment. Being able to control the break time, teachers will be capable of having power over the different behaviors and conflicts that may arise since they can be a later influence in the classroom. Furthermore, I really like the idea of helping children by providing them with new and alternative forms of games and the availability of different enabled areas. The only aspect that we have to take into account is that it would be necessary to encourage more students to perform other activities besides football and without thereby do not be entail an obligation for them.
- What do you think about these types of projects?
- Is it important to organize break times for our students or not?
- Do you know another way in order to improve the daily coexistence in the school?
- CEIP Cantabria (2018). “Me recreo en el recreo”.